By CHERIL VERNON
The Palestine Independent School District’s Board of Trustees unanimously voted to change the name of Palestine Middle School to Palestine Junior High School during its regular school board meeting Monday.
The name change didn’t come lightly. The recommendation to change the school campus name came after a process which involved a Campus Action Team, faculty, parental input and the District Action Team. With the move of the sixth-grade students to Story Intermediate, the campus is now structured as a junior high school.
Faculty and staff were made aware of the consideration through a faculty meeting. Parents were encouraged to communicate their opinions through a parental letter. An online survey was made available to all on the campus website.
The results from the variety of surveys were shared with the Campus Action Team, which discussed the cost and benefits of the change. The faculty and District Action Team reviewed the information and after discussion from both the Campus Action Team and the District Action team, voted to support the change and request board consideration.
In other action, the school board:
• APPROVED Smith, Lambright & Associates, P.C. to provide Palestine ISD Financial Audit for year ending Aug. 31, 2013
• HEARD an update on future bus purchases. PISD Director of Business Services David Atkeisson suggested the school district get back on track of rotating out some of the older buses by purchasing a couple of buses each year.
• APPROVED extension of administrators contacts, including: Lance Angel, one-year extension; Sheila Bradley, one-year term; Stephen Cooksey, two-year term; Jenny Cunningham, one-year term; Dee Dietz, one-year term; Barbara Dutton, one-year extension; Suzanne Eiben, one-year extension; Michael Esparza, one-year extension; Eric Haltom, one-year term; Peggy Herrington, one-year extension; Rhonda Herrington, one-year extension; Linda Holmes, one-year term; Kevin Jackson, one-year term; Brandon Jayroe, one-year extension; Larissa Loveless, one-year extension; Grace Mancilla, one-year term; Shanna Marshall, one-year term (part-time); Carolyn Martin, one-year extension; Joseph Mason, one-year term; Melissa Molandes, one-year term; Sharon Reed, two-year term; Lolita Shed, one-year term (part-time); William Stewart, one-year term; William Tunstall, one-year term; and non-certified administrators: David Atkeisson, one-year contract; Jeffrey Hatfield, one-year contract; and David Long, one-year contract.
• APPROVED resolution supporting Texas Public Schools 2013. This year’s theme for Celebrate Texas Public Schools (formerly Texas Public Schools Week) has been designated March 4-9.
• APPROVED the 2013-2014 school calendar. The District Action Team was presented with two calendars for review and presentation to their campuses so that each campus had an opportunity to vote on the school calendar. The calendar approved is the result of the campus majority vote.
• APPROVED high school/junior high course guides for 2013-2014. PHS College and Career Counselor Sarah Johnson presented information about two new pathways for CTE students for the 2013-2014 school year, including a business/finance pathway and an advanced graphic arts/imaging technology pathway.
• APPROVED school trustee election order and notice for May 11 election. The school election will be held May 11 for the purpose of electing three members, Place 3, Place 4 and Place 5 of the Board of Trustees for a full three-year term. All requests by candidates to have their names placed upon the ballot must be done in writing and signed by the candidate and filed with the secretary of the Board of Trustees at the superintendent’s office no later than 5 p.m. Friday, March 1.
• APPROVED joint election resolution between City of Palestine and Palestine ISD. Palestine ISD and the City of Palestine will share the following common polling locations: Freedom Fellowship Church, 125 Kickapoo St., New Fellowship Christian Church, 1500 W. Reagan St.; Washington Early Childhood Center, 1020 Hamlett St; Palestine ISD Administrative Offices, 1007 E. Park Ave.; and Palestine High School, 1600 S. Loop 256. Each political subdivision will conduct separate early voting locations for the period from April 29 through May 7.
• APPROVED revised cheerleading constitution.
• APPROVED revised drill team constitution.
• APPROVED Anti-Voucher resolution
• HEARD Superintendent’s report
• HEARD construction update
• HEARD financial report
• APPROVED consent items
In addition, Palestine High School will hold an official opening for its Career Technology Education (CTE) building on Tuesday, March 5.
The PISD Board of Trustees’ next regular school board meeting was rescheduled for Monday, March 25.